Spread betting and Tax


Well-known member
Hi All,

Not sure if this is the right place, but anyway.

I havent been on here for a long time. I know that generally spread betting is classified as tax free ( CGT), but I do remember people saying that
if the HMRC sees profits as your MAIN income, then it will become taxable ?

Anyone has any experience of this ? What do we mean by MAIN ? more than 30% of your income ? or more than 50% perhaps ?

Presumably if so, they will treat it as additional income and therefore, income tax?

Anyone has any experience of this ?

Thanks in advance



Hi Al, it's a long time since we communicated and I hope all is well with you. Have a look at this thread which may help.

Although some people keep saying that HMRC will tax those who use SB for their main income, I have never come across it. The key issue is that if HMRC can tax SB profits then by the same measure any losses incurred by SB can be offset against tax. That would leave HMRC in a difficult position because then everyone could claim they are full time SB traders and offset all losses that most would incur. The extra revenue that HMRC may gain from full time traders would be lost by those losing in my view.

There have been many (and often quite heated) exchange of views on this subject so your post may be the catalyst for a phoenix from the ashes arising :)


Active member
There is no tax implications for a UK resident profiting though spreadbetting. There have been political / governmental debates about this in the past, and the option to tax has always been dropped.
The confusion sometimes arises when people misinterpret the HMRC definition of carrying on (spreadbetting as) a trade. What this means is that if you set up a spreadbetting business, and offer the spreads, you will be taxed as a business. (and rightly so). You are not taxed as a 'punter'.


Legendary member
For several years at one time SB was not my main income, it was my ONLY income. HMRC have no interest in SB. They will not even send you a self-assessment form.
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